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Culture Minister Jose Herrera Insists Malta’s Budget Includes Support For Artists

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Minister for National Heritage and the Arts Jose Herrera insisted that Malta’s 2021 budget caters to everyone’s needs, including those in cultural and creative sectors.

Next year’s budget will see €31.7 million allocated to funding projects of Arts Council Malta, as well as Malta’s public cultural organisations. Meanwhile, €3.5 million will be devoted to cultural initiatives targeting Valletta as part of the Valletta Cultural Agency.

“The government has not only maintained its investment in the areas of national heritage, the arts and local government but has even increased its investment in all these sectors,” Herrera said.

A direct allocation of €1 million for a new cultural aid fund was also unveiled to cushion the impact of the pandemic on workers in creative industries. Additionally, artists and entertainers can benefit from the wage supplement scheme.

“We will continue to strongly support the cultural and creative industry to recover and move forward,” Minister Herrera continued.

His statement comes after the backlash from entertainment lobby MEIA, who said their pleas for state support fell on deaf ears.

“Whereas the budget is rich on social measures, it does not consider the arts and entertainment sectors as drivers of economic development in a time of recovery,” Malta Entertainment Industry and Arts Association warned.

Last month, the newly-established lobby laid of proposals to safeguard artists and entertainers in Malta, including vouchers to be spent solely on arts.

Around 5,000 people in Malta work in the arts, entertainment, film, and TV sectors.

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